The project started February 1, 2008, and development was completed at the end of July 2008. Due to technical delays, the actual DVD release date was postponed to November 14. Since December 9, the game is available to download.
The name Yo Frankie! refers to the game's protagonist, Frank. It was suggested by Ton Roosendaal, and selected by a community vote.
Screenshots of Yo Frankie!, running on the Blender Game Engine, featuring Frank the sugar glider
As with previous "open" movie projects, the game is partly designed to promote the open source modeling and animation tool Blender. The modeling, animation and level design were done in Blender. The game itself is rendered with both Blender's internal game engine and the Crystal Space 3D engine, using Python as a scripting language.
The initial decision to use Crystal Space over Blender's own built-in Game Engine was due to the perceived need to create a more "serious" game platform. The development team later partly reversed this decision, by making a new version of the game playable on the Blender Game Engine. This allows artists and level designers a more rapid workflow than rebuilding for the Crystal Space engine on every change (the Blender Game Engine only takes about 2–5 seconds to export—in Crystal Space, this can take up to a minute).
There are two versions of the game on the DVD, one with the Blender Game Engine, and a version with Crystal Space. The Blender Game Engine version of the game is titled "A Furry Vendetta", while the Crystal Space version is titled "Furry Funny Frankie". Though some of the assets for making the levels and the characters are shared, the gameplay differs between versions.